An Unprecedented Group of Bitcoin Industry Leaders are Gathering for a Weekend Retreat

Bruce Fenton

How can this meeting be the most effective?

The people who will be in this room can do it. Together the attendees of this month’s Satoshi Roundtable could resolve the Bitcoin capacity discussion and unify our industry.

Is this possible? Is this too big of an ask? I don’t know. No single person has the power to make any outcome occur, all we can do is bring people together, work hard to make the setting ideal and hope. Can everyone put aside the past and their differences, compromise a bit and move forward together? Should this even be the goal? We just don’t know.

What we do know is that this is a historical opportunity. This divisive capacity debate has harmed our industry, harmed the price of Bitcoin, driven away investors and developers and garnered negative press. We have the power to end it all now.

In recent days, despite a guest list that has been long filled, Satoshi Roundtable has had industry leaders take time from their schedule and ask to join the already comprehensive group. The Roundtable has accommodated whenever possible.

The current list is a comprehensive industry gathering(in alphabetical order):

Gabriel Abed, CEO Bitt
Gavin Andresen, MIT / Bitcoin Foundation
Adam Back, President, Blockstream
David Bailey, CEO, yBitcoins
Patrick Byrne, CEO, Overstock
Michael Cao, CEO, zoomhash
Dave Carlson, CEO, Mega Big Power
Daniel Castagnoli, CCO Exodus
Sam Cole, CEO, KNC Miner
Matt Corallo, Core Developer
Luke Dashjr, Core Developer
Anthony Di Iorio, CDO-Toronto Stock Exchange, Founder-Ethereum/Decentral/Kryptokit
Joe Disorbo, CEO, Webgistix
Jason Dorsett, Early Adopter
Evan Duffield, Founder/Lead Scientist, Dash
Andrew Flilipowski, Partner, Tally Capital
Thomas France, Founder, Ledger
Jeff Garzik, Founder, Bloq
David Johnston, Chairman, Factom
Alyse Killeen, Partner, (New Venture Capital Fund)
Jason King, Founder, Unsung
Mike Komaransky, Cumberland Mining
Peter Kroll, Founder,
Bobby Lee, CEO BTC China, Board Member, Bitcoin Foundation
Charlie Lee, Director of Engineering, Coinbase/ Founder of Litecoin
Eric Lombrozo, Founder, Ciphrex Corp
Marshall Long, CTO, Final Hash
Halsey Minor, CEO, Uphold / Founder of CNet
Neha Narula, Director, MIT
Dawn Newton, Co-Founder, COO, Netki
Justin Newton, Founder, CEO, Netki
Stephen Pair, Co-Founder/CEO, BitPay Inc.
Michael Perklin, President, CryptoCurrency Certification Consortium, Board Member Bitcoin Foundation
Alex Petrov, CIO, BitFury
Francis Pouliot, Director, Bitcoin Embassy, Board Member Bitcoin Foundation
Phil Potter, CFA, Bitfinex
JP Richardson, Chief Technical Officer, Exodus
Jamie Robinson, QuickBt
Jez San, Angel Investor
Marco Santori, Partner, Pillsbury
Scott Scalf, EVP/Head of Tech Team, Alpha Point
Craig Sellars CTO, Tether
Ryan Shea, Co-Founder, One Name
Melanie Shapiro, CEO Choose Case
Greg Simon, CEO & Co-Founder Ribbit! Me / President, Bitcoin Association
Ryan Singer, Entreprenuer
Paul Snow, CEO Factom, Texas Bitcoin Conference
Riccardo Spagni, Get Monero
Nick Spanos, Founder, Bitcoin Center NYC
Marco Streng, CEO, Genesis Mining
Nick Sullivan, CEO, ChangeTip
Paul Sztorc, Truthcoin
Michael Terpin, CEO Transform Group
Peter Todd, Core Developer
Joseph Vaughn Perling, New Liberty Dollar
Roger Ver, CEO, Memory Dealers
Shawn Wilkinson, Founder, Storj
Micah Winkelspecht, CEO, Gem

also, representatives from Blockchain, Bain Capital Ventures, Fidelity Investments and others.

One could guess that these folks are not joining this retreat simply because they want to network, catch up with friends or have a few meals. Right now, the leaders of this industry are focused on the capacity issue and how to solve it. Blocksize was not even an original topic for the Roundtable, but it would be foolish to not use this gathering to have maximum focus on a solution.

It is crucial for us to move beyond who is right, who was wrong, who broke protocol, offended others or who should get credit for what. We also don’t have time to wait to see what happens or plan further meetings. This may be the last time during this discussion that a group of this caliber is gathered in one location. We can not let this opportunity go by as simply a interesting or fun time that was somewhat productive. We should use this unique chance to make real progress and come up with something by Sunday afternoon that shows tangible work on a solution. The greatest success the participants produce is not a Monday morning recap that says “This was a good event with good information exchanged” but one that says “We talked, we compromised, we came together and, united, this written document was produced”.

Today it seems there are a few major areas we can focus on:
The clear and straight forward technical issue: how can the participants of the Satoshi Roundtable explain their point of view to others better. Can developers better articulate the technical risks or issues with a hard fork? Can CEOs more clearly explain their point of view and industry needs? Once this is done can we determine a technical solution that the leaders from various angles of the issue can live with?
Can we bring various opinions together in a productive way?
Can we move beyond some of the past issues and focus on what is best for the overall industry?
— Can we present a unified vision to the public?

Satoshi Roundtable would like your help. Are these the right questions? How can we resolve these issues? What real and tangible results can we hope to produce from this retreat?

Equally important: What are the most effective ways to foster positive dynamics between the participants?

Attendees and those who can’t make it, professional negotiators, techies, participants in open source projects, human relations experts, conference planners, teachers and Bitcoin geeks of all variety: please help — how can we use this opportunity in the most effective way?

If you were a moderator at this meeting, what would you do?

Please share your thoughts.

Bruce Fenton, Atlantic Financial/